When Liverpool rebuffed all of Barcelona's approaches for Philippe Coutinho in the summer, they must have been looking forward to another season with the Brazilian magician.
But there was always a fear the Spanish giants would renew their interest in the midfielder when the January transfer window reopened - and that’s exactly what has happened.
According to reports, Coutinho is closer to a move to the Camp Nou than he’s ever been before and has supposedly told Liverpool he won’t be playing for them again.
With Liverpool battling for a top-four spot in the Premier League, in the last-16 of the Champions League and facing Everton on Friday in the FA Cup, Jurgen Klopp’s side have a lot to play for.
Losing Coutinho now would be a disaster.
WHAT CARRAGHER SAID ABOUT COUTINHO IN AUGUST
And it’s something Jamie Carragher didn’t even contemplate happening back in August.
During the summer transfer window, Carragher spoke to Sky Sports and was adamant that Liverpool wouldn’t sell their star player. While he got that bit spot on, he also believed he would remain at Anfield for the next 12 months.
That isn’t looking like the case right now.
"What is the point of Jurgen Klopp or the owners being at Liverpool if you are going to sell your best players? You are there to be successful. Klopp is not there just to be in the top four,” Carragher said.
"The thing with Coutinho is that he will want to go. I think Liverpool will have him and he will stay, but I think they will have him for 12 months. I do not think there is any way Liverpool will sell him before. Not a chance.
"In terms of the situation now with Coutinho, not a chance of him going really. This window has not been good for Liverpool, which has not helped, and there would be a riot against the owners and the club if he went because this transfer window has not gone how Liverpool wanted.
"And I just think they can get 12 more months out of Coutinho."
Carragher will be hoping he’s proved right.
In fact, the former defender has tweeted what he believes Liverpool should go - agree a deal for the summer meaning Coutinho remains at the club.
That looks as though it’s Liverpool’s best solution right now.
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